April 8th, 2003

Asta 2

The Darkside of Fandom

Alright, the title may be a little melodramatic, but Lynn threw the phrase out there and I liked it.

I had a mini epiphany yesterday after reading comments wisteria_ made regarding the backlash she received for posting spoilers. I use to be thoroughly spoiled myself and can understand the allure. It's hard now even to stay away. I miss the analyzing and speculating. And I wonder if I should prepare myself for what I most likely won't be seeing. But I fear if I do so, I'll get sucked back into the bickering and mudslinging that I find on too many boards.

My opinion is that there is nothing wrong with spoilers per se, nor is there anything disturbing about wanting to analyze them. My problem has always been with the vocal minority who've become so disenchanted with the show and angry with ME that they try to ruin the show for the rest of us.

If you hate the show that much, if it's making your life that miserable, than watch something else. While I can understand - to a point - people getting upset with certain character developments or plotlines (Willow's addiction storyline, the AR, Tara's death) we really can't do a damn thing about it. Most of us don't want people coming to us and telling us how to do our jobs or how to raise our family. Why should people feel they have the right to dictate to ME what they should be doing?

What's even worse to me was the lengths some "fans" have gone to in creating discontent. Anyone else remember how people were calling the balcony scene in the Bronze a rape? How a single punch was being referred to as another beat down of Spike by Buffy? The endless speculation that ME was going to toss aside years of character development and make Spike evil again?

Now, I'm not saying I haven't been disappointed by certain aspects of the show. Would I have liked more Spuffy? Abso-freakin-lutely. But what I want and what Joss wants to happen to the characters apparently do not mesh. Heck, I'm sure Joss has a couple of favorite shows where he sits at home and thinks how he would have done it differently.

What I relized yesterday, whatever frustration and dissapointment I may have with ME, the current storyline, or fandom, is, essentially, my problem.

Spike is my favorite character. Spuffy (and Spike's redemption within that)is my favorite storyline. Hence I became part of a community that spent copious amounts of time discussuing those particular aspects of the show. And I'm not sure my focus has ever been so narrow in regards to a show. I loved Mulder and Scully and I loved John and Aeryn, but I never recall watching The X-Files or Farscape and attempting to analyze every word spoken or gesture made by those characters. I always viewed them within the big picture. I see now I was alot saner and healthier for it.

I sit her relizing I probably won't get the big Spuffy ending. Just as I'm sure the Buffy bashers will be screaming that ME screwed up Spike's redemption storyline (I disagree). My point is, if we feel disappointment or betrayal (I've heard people use this term and it makes me laugh - it's just a TV show people!) it's bloody well a circumstance of our own making.

As we draw to a close, I think back and relize if I had watched the show instead of just the characters I'd have had a lot more sleep and a lot more peace. But, I didn't, my bad. So I shall try to watch these final weeks with an open mind and gratitude fro ME creating it all to begin with.
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